The online Merriam Webster definition of stigma is “a mark of shame or discredit.”
I’m not keen to use the term stigma to describe what is in effect a lack of compassion for people who are different, who might not look like you, who might have an illness.
Too often the word stigma is framed as the cause of people not seeking help for mental health issues.
My memoir Left of the Dial chronicles my own fear of not being normal.
In 2020 I would like to be part of the solution to what’s going on in the world.
For too long narrow-mindedness has ruled in society.
I can identify with individuals who were subjected to “conversion therapy.”
I can relate to people who were told to conform and give up their dream of being an artist.
What I’d really like to do is contribute to the dialog about how to heal from stigma.
No one should feel guilty or ashamed because they don’t fit the mold of what other people think is acceptable.
It’s so easy to fall into the trap of internalizing this stigma.
On the cusp of 55 I’ve decided to promote individuality as the remedy.
The only way to succeed in life is to be who you are not who others would like you to be.
In coming blog entries I’m going to talk about the beauty of individuality in more detail.